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pet sitter fell through, advice please

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by brookwoodpat, Jun 27, 2008.

  1. brookwoodpat

    brookwoodpat Songster

    May 11, 2008
    I need to be away 2 nights and 1 1/2 days. I had arranged two weeks ago for a licensed insured supposedly professional pet sitter to come and let the chickens out of their coop during the day, and lock them up at night (they are yarded, not in a run, though they have a small pen attached to their coop) and check feed and water. But the pet sitter missed two appointments to walk through the routine, and now I am stuck. Very difficult to find another pet sitter and the one close neighbor I have, who once agreed to duck sit for me, forgot to come and feed my ducks, so I can't really ask her either.

    I have ten, eight week old RIR and Red Stars and five 4 week old baby chicks. The babies I am going to pen up in the house, but the eight week olds I feel like I can try to move into the basement (not a great option as it is full of stuff) or I can build a hardware cloth pen around their existing coop tomorrow with u posts and hope that it keeps them safe for a couple of nights when they are in the coop/pen. Their present pen around it is just 6 by 8 and so would be way too small if I add 2 or 3 feeders and waterers each for redundancy in this hot weather. It's really just a holding pen that they wait in until I let them out in the morning to free range. Mostly I am worried about them running out of food and water due to their knocking feeders/waterers over or through some accident. It's supposed to be very hot this weekend. So I plan to have 2 2 gallon waterers (for ten 8 week chicks) and one 11 pound feeder. Is that enough? I am not sure what is safer -- leaving them out in their accustomed coop and pen and just trying to expand it, or bringing them into an unfamilar basement and trying to make that safe. Neither is ideal, so I'm looking for opinions.
  2. angelmarie

    angelmarie Songster

    Jun 3, 2008
    where are you located?
  3. brookwoodpat

    brookwoodpat Songster

    May 11, 2008
  4. angelmarie

    angelmarie Songster

    Jun 3, 2008
    well theres tons of people on here from maryland maybe one of them can tend to your flock, theres also websites like petsitter where you could find someone
  5. basicliving

    basicliving Keepin' the sunny side up

    Mar 20, 2008
    Shenandoah Valley, VA
    I wish we lived closer and could swap watching each other's pets. We're in a similar situation - completely dependent on a pet sitter for any trips we take - and we're going to be gone a week in August to visit my husband's parents. The schedule didn't work out with the pet sitters, so we had to modify ours.

    I wonder if you could call all the local vet offices and ask if they know of another person that provides these services - or if there is an employee there that may be interested? I've done that - and the person we currently use is the only one they know of. Maybe try the local pet shelter?

    Our coop is too small to leave all our chicks inside for an entire week - but if I were in your situation, I may try to leave them inside for 2 and 1/2 days. Can you find a way to secure the food and water so they can not knock them over? Is there any way to install a fan safely that will run while you're gone and help keep them a little cooler?

    Ideally, maybe someone on this board from Maryland will see this post and offer to help out.

    Sorry I can't be more help.

    Last edited: Jun 27, 2008
  6. I would think they would be fine for that period of time. I sure understand how stressful it is going away when you have pets! They might miss their "mommy" who puts them outside each day, but honestly seems ok for 2 nights. Good luck!
  7. derby

    derby Songster

    Apr 18, 2008
    Boonsboro, MD
    What County are you in?

  8. hcammack

    hcammack Crowing

    Oct 5, 2007
    Oh I am sorry I am leaving to [​IMG] I would help you out if you were close to me.

  9. brookwoodpat

    brookwoodpat Songster

    May 11, 2008
    well i am giving up

    there"s just no way i can build them an addition on their coop today

    so i"ve filled their eleven pound feeder to the brim

    and i"ve put two two gallon waterers in there

    also because they are hanging waterers and they are always jumping on them and spilling the water i am putting a tub of water in there too

    they will be croweded in there for two days but probably less so than commercial chickens and it just can"t be helped

    i don"t think they can starve in two days and while i worry about water i have tried my best to make sure they have it

    now the hardest part will be to round them up before they usually roost and put them in their pen

    i just really didn"t need this stress after i thought i had arranged for a professional licensed and insured pet sitter
  10. aliciaford

    aliciaford In the Brooder

    Mar 31, 2008
    We recently left for 2 nights and chickens were fine. Worry about the water not so much the food. I left 6 gallons of water for 68 chickens who were 8 weeks old and there was water left, but not a lot of food.

    They were happy to see me, and I was happy they were all safe. So have a good time...

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